Taylor Swift: Directing was more fulfilling than I ever could have imagined
Taylor Swift says she hadn’t ever intended to direct her own short films, but that the experience had been “more fulfilling than I ever could have imagined”.
The pop megastar discussed the process of directing her short film for hit track All Too Well with Oscar-winning director Martin McDonagh as part of US outlet Variety’s Directors On Director series.
Stranger Things star Sadie Sink and Teen Wolf’s Dylan O’Brien starred in the nearly 15-minute video, which was also written by Swift.
McDonagh won the Academy Award for best live action short film for Six Shooter in 2004 and has received nominations for three other Oscars, including best picture.
His most recent film, the Banshees Of Inisherin, starring Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson, has already received wide critical acclaim, including a Golden Globe nomination for best motion picture: musical or comedy.
Asked by McDonagh if she had always wanted to direct, Swift replied: “No, I always wanted to tell stories. I have always written stories, poetry, songs.
“And I think this just grew out of that storytelling. And the more I did it, the more I loved it.”
Speaking about the video for her 2019 track The Man, she continued: “I wanted a female director to direct it.
“And the few that I reached out to were fortunately booked. We like it when women work.
“So I was like, ‘I could do it, maybe.’ And when I did direct, I just thought, ‘This is actually more fulfilling than I ever could have imagined.’
Swift said she had never met Sink or O’Brien but had admired Sink’s “presence” when acting in Stranger Things.
“I thought, ‘She’s never been a romantic lead and I wonder if she’d be interested in playing a young woman who goes through her first catastrophic, cataclysmic heartbreak’.”
The singer-songwriter took home the coveted best video, best longform video and best direction gongs earlier this year at the 2022 MTV Video Music Awards for the music video.
This achievement helped her make history as the only solo artist ever to be honoured with two best direction awards following her win at the 2020 award show for the music video for The Man.
All Too Well: The Short Film also won best video and best longform video at the MTV Europe Music Awards (EMAs) last month.
The full conversation between Swift and McDonagh can be read on Variety’s website.